I check out a baby board pretty often, and often here women around me saying that their biggest personal struggle is with their weight. These women range from being very thin and wanting to lose just a few pounds to much heavier and wanting to lose a lot of weight. Most are pretty average and look great in my opinion but still think they need to lose about 50 pounds or so...
Personally, for health reasons I need to lose weight. A decent amount but nothing that can't be achieved through slow and steady work. I've spent years despising my "good birthing hips" as Daniel puts it, hating my chest because, let's face it, the girls are STILL growing/changing, and everytime I'd look in the mirror saying to myself, "You are so fat" or something equally awful.
One day, I decided to change that. I decided that even if I could stand to lose some weight, I'm still ME and I"m still valuable, important, intelligent, beautiful, etc. I changed my self-talk. Anytime I said anything disrespectful to myself I'd stop and say OUT LOUD, "You look great today!" or "You're so smart!" After a few weeks I noticed I wasn't really saying negative things to myself anymore. Now, when I look in the mirror I find something to compliment myself about, whether it's my eyes, my thinner looking jawline, etc. I just don't let myself say terrible things anymore!
I have found my body image is much more improved; I've learned to love my body the way it is. I AM still trying to make better lifestyle and eating choices so I can be a better example to my daughter...but I am also focusing on making sure I have a positive body image of my body NOW so that Abigail will always have the same, no matter her shape or size. I'd rather look the way I do now for the rest of my life and have my sweet daughter (who helped give my body some of this shape!) and loving husband (who truly appreciates everything about me) and enjoy a brownie once or twice a week than starve myself to misery. I look forward to and hope for the day that my daughter, during high school, while trying on wedding dresses, and after just having a baby, can say, "I love how I look!" because I took the steps necessary to change my personal self-talk and body image now.
I wish I could spread this to more people, because it really has made such a difference in my life, my daily habits, my attitude, etc. As my lifestyle changes continue, and my body continues to evolve I hope I can continue to look at the positive aspects of my body and not construe them as negatives! I'm not saying I'm perfect at this, and occasionally still have "down moments" about my body, but putting the negative self talk to rest has done wonders for me....so I had to share in hopes that it'd help someone else too!